At our next meeting, Fast Forward broke the silence. “I was, at first, constantly frustrated, always wishing for my old life. I’m sure we all went through that,” she said, her voice echoing in the room.
“I felt trapped, trapped in my own body,” echoed Hulkwoman. “I wanted to lash out, to break free, but… there was nothing to lash out at. The enemy was inside me.”
It was a sentiment we had all experienced, to varying degrees. As superhumans, we were always defined by our abilities. Without them, we felt incomplete. As though a part of our identity had been stolen from us. But we were here to change that narrative.
“What is positive behaviour support?” I asked them, the question breaking the sombre silence. Everyone turned to look at me, their eyes mirroring the confusion I had anticipated. “It’s an approach for others to help manage our emotions, to change our behaviours and reactions in a positive way. The community nursing service I consulted offered it.”
Hulkwoman frowned. “And how’s that supposed to help us, Cap?”
I leaned back, allowing the question to sink in. “By letting us focus on what we can do, not what we can’t. On who we are, not who we were. By giving us control over our own narratives. Instead of letting our disabilities define us, we define them.”
I felt the shift in the room, the seeds of hope planting themselves. The idea of regaining some control, of being able to shape our own stories, was empowering.
Mary finally opened up. “I used to fly,” she began, the words as surprising as her speaking. “When I lost my wings, I lost myself. But if there’s a chance to find myself again, to accept the change and make it my own… I’d like that.”
Together, we set about making a positive behaviour support plan in Adelaide for ourselves. The plan wasn’t about erasing our disabilities, it was about embracing them and learning to live with them. It was about reclaiming our lives, one step at a time.
By the end of the session, there was a spark in everyone’s eyes – a newfound determination. We were taking the first step towards a new journey, towards acceptance and change. And that made all the difference.